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Mobile apps & the missing links

There are advantages of developing mobile apps (and app stores): user experience, distribution and monetization opportunities. 

However mobile apps don’t work like the mobile web in some pretty important ways.

For starters, developers must develop for each specific platform - iPhone, Android and Blackberry. That’s very different than developing for the open web and at a high level feels like a big step backwards. 

A few weeks ago I was talking to one of the founders from one of our portfolio companies. He pointed out another downside of mobile apps. You can’t easily create links to specific pieces of content or “pages” from one mobile app to another. Can one mobile app link to a specific profile page in the foursquare app or the yelp app for example? Or can a link in the NYT app send the user to a specific tweet in a twitter client.

The web is built on many things and links are a key part of the network.

How do we get them fully native our mobile apps? Or am I missing something.